Ancient History

Ancient history is the study of the written past from the beginning of recorded human history to the Early Middle Ages. The span of recorded history is roughly 5,000 years, with Cuneiform script, the oldest discovered form of coherent writing, from the protoliterate period around the 30th century BC. This is the beginning of history, as opposed to prehistory, according to the definition used by most historians.

The term classical antiquity is often used to refer to history in the Old World from the beginning of recorded Greek history in 776 BC (First Olympiad). This roughly coincides with the traditional date of the founding of Rome in 753 BC, the beginning of the history of ancient Rome, and the beginning of the Archaic period in Ancient Greece. Although the ending date of ancient history is disputed, some Western scholars use the fall of the Western Roman Empire in 476 AD, the closure of the Platonic Academy in 529 AD, the death of the emperor Justinian I, the coming of Islam or the rise of Charlemagne as the end of ancient and Classical European history.

In India, the period includes the early period of the Middle Kingdoms, and, in China, the time up to the Qin Dynasty is included.

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Famous quotes containing the words history and/or ancient:

    They are a sort of post-house,where the Fates
    Change horses, making history change its tune,
    Then spur away o’er empires and o’er states,
    Leaving at last not much besides chronology,
    Excepting the post-obits of theology.
    George Gordon Noel Byron (1788–1824)

    Even as fog continues to lie in the valleys, so does ancient sin cling to the low places, the depressions in the world consciousness.
    Dewitt Bodeen (1908–1988)